The government has decided not to hike prices of foodgrains sold via public distribution system (PDS) for one more year, Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said today. Foodgrains via ration shops are supplied at a highly subsidised rate of Rs 3/kg for rice, Rs 2/kg for wheat and Rs 1/kg for coarse grains via PDS as per the National Food Security Act (NFSA). “The Prime Minister has approved to keep central issue price of rice, wheat and coarse grains unchanged at the rate of Rs 3/2/1 per kg, respectively for further one year,” Paswan told PTI. By keeping the central issue price of food grains unchanged under the NFSA, the government has shown its commitment towards the well-being of depressed class, he said.
Under the NFSA, which was passed in Parliament in 2013 during the previous UPA regime, there is a provision for revision of the issue prices of food grains every three years. At present, the government supplies 5 kg of subsidised foodgrains to each person per month to over 81 crore people via 5,00,000 ration shops in the country, costing the exchequer about Rs 1.4 lakh crore annually. NFSA was rolled out across the country in November 2016.